Belstead Mews reminisce on their summer of sun, sea and fun
It’s been a summertime jam-packed with fun and entertainment at Belstead Mews, our service supporting young people with learning disabilities, autism and complex needs. Let’s see what they got up to this year…
It wouldn’t be summer at Belstead Mews without Service Manager Pat’s highly anticipated annual tradition of camping under the stars. Camp Belstead kicked off with planting the iconic camp flag, and after setting up tents deep in the woods, the campers enjoyed a hike, played games, and of course roasted marshmallows on the campfire.
Team Leader, Danielle, shared that this was her favourite part of the trip. “Talking around the campfire, and seeing the young people relaxed, happy and just enjoying their weekend was a lovely experience.” Team Leader, Chris, added, “The Camp Belstead activities show how the young people are growing – becoming more confident and independent, and taking on responsibilities for things such as collecting water, or checking the fire. It made me very proud!”
The Big Summer Party
The classic Belstead Summer Party just gets bigger and better every year. This year’s theme was ‘Cartoons’ – chosen as ever by the young people – which provided lots of inspiration and ideas for costumes, decorations and entertainment.
From a live DJ and garden games; to a bouncy castle and petting zoo (complete with rabbits, guinea pigs, and ponies too!) – even the skies opening couldn’t dampen the day, as everyone covered up and continued to dance on in the rain.
Theme Park Fun
Lego can be an excellent addition to sensory play and exploration, and some of the young people we support at Belstead Mews are big Lego fans. When the team announced the next adventure was Legoland, they could barely contain their excitement. The rides, interactive exhibits, and of course, the Lego, provided an enjoyable (if a little tiring) summer day out.
And if that wasn’t enough – Lowestoft’s family theme park, Pleasurewood Hills, was another day out on Belstead’s summertime adventures. The young people braved all of the rides – rollercoasters included – and had fun challenging one another to go-kart races in the arcade. They took the foot off the gas, taking to the skies in the park’s chairlifts and enjoyed a birds-eye view of the park below.
The sights, sounds and stimulation of the busy streets of the capital can be a struggle for anyone to manage – and is particularly challenging for some of the young people we support at Belstead Mews. However, the team have been working with the young people to increase confidence in busy places, and by developing these skills and providing information and reassurance, their trip to London was a huge success. The young people were at the helm, using the London Underground maps to direct everyone to the next destination.
The London adventure included taking in the sights at the London Eye and Buckingham Palace and ending the day with a fun visit to London’s unique Shrek Adventure. What an amazing day!
Sun, Sea and Sand
And at Belstead, we know it’s not a summer holiday without a trip to the seaside. Great Yarmouth didn’t disappoint – running toes through the sand and paddling by the waters edge. After indulging in the rides, arcades and a stroll on the pier, the day was topped off with fish and chips, and fresh donuts on the beach – pure bliss!
Pat says, “This whole summer has been wonderful – especially after the restrictions over the last few years, I’ve loved seeing everyone just have fun and enjoy the sun.”
Chris added, “I’m so proud of the team for working together to make this summer so memorable. Everyone here treats one another like family, and their dedication and passion is truly inspiring.”